Assur and Nineveh (1910)

A Bronze Lion from Nineveh [Public Domain]
This image is from Illustrerad Verldshistoria by Ernst Wallis et al, published 1875-9.
The following public domain article is now available on-line:

Theophilus G. Pinches, “Assur and Nineveh,” Journal of the Transactions of the Victoria Institute 42 (1910): 154-176.

Assur and Nineveh

Assur

Of all the little explanatory verses on the Old Testament there are probably but few which are of greater interest than that referring to the great cities of Assyria. It is that well-known verse 11 of the 10th chapter of Genesis, which, in the Revised Version, tells us that, “out of that land (Shinar or Babylonia) he (Nimrod, who is best identified with the Babylonian god Merodach) went forth into Assyria, and builded Nineveh, and Rehoboth-Ir, and Calah, and Resen between Nineveh and Calah (the same is the great city).” Whether it was Asshur or Nimrod who went forth from Babylonia or not is a matter of but minor importance, as it is the cities which were founded, and not the person who founded them, with which we have to deal.

A very important testimony to the great size of Nineveh is given in the Book of Jonah, where it is spoken of, in verse 2 of the third chapter, as ”that great city,” and further, in the third verse of the same chapter, as “an exceeding great city of three days’ journey,” the distance referred to being commonly regarded as indicating its extent. Naturally, there is some difficulty in estimating this from such a vague statement, for, admitting that the words are correctly applied, the distance traversed must necessarily depend on the speed of the traveller. Perhaps a preaching – journey, such as that upon which the prophet Jonah was engaged, was slower than an ordinary one, but taking as a rough estimate 10 miles a day, this would make about 30 miles as its greatest extent. Between Nineveh and Calah, However, there is nothing like this distance, so that another explanation will have to be found.

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Discoveries in Babylonia (1909)

Babylonia at the Time of Hammurabi
Babylonia at the Time of Hammurabi [Source: Wikipedia Commons]
The following Public Domain article is now available on-line in PDF.

Theophilus G. Pinches [1856-1934], “Discoveries in Babylonia and the Neighbouring Lands,” Journal of the Transactions of the Victoria Institute 41 (1909): 99-122.

Discoveries in Babylonia and the Neighbouring Lands

Gradually, but surely and ever more speedily, Assyriology is becoming the most important study in the domain of Oriental archaeology. The language of the Babylonians and Assyrians proves to be a tongue of the most engrossing importance, whilst that of the seemingly earlier race-the Sumerians-with which it was brought into contact, is regarded by some as the coming study for those who wish to acquire renown as true archaeological linguists. But besides the languages, with their dialects, a very specially interesting and important field of study is their archaeology in general, their beliefs, their manners and customs, their arts and sciences, and the geography of the land. Whether we shall ever obtain information as to their original home, we do not know, but we may, by chance, acquire, ultimately, the information needed to find out where that place may have been; and in any case, we shall know all the better what influence those nations may have had in the world, to say nothing of the bearing of their records on the all-important subject of Bible hi13tory, thought, and beliefs. A number of closely-connected nations whose influence extended from Elam on the ea.st to the Mediterranean and Egypt on the west, and from the Caspian Sea on the north to Arabia on the south, cannot fail to have exercised considerable influence beyond those borders and boundaries – an influence of which we shall not obtain a full idea for many years to come.

Now that we have learned so much about these ancient nations, and their peculiar wedge-formed characters, we know also something of their power and the wide influence of their writing. It is now known that the so-called Phoenician goes back to 1,500 or 2,000 years before Christ, but there was a time when the cuneiform script, in one form or other, was used all over Western Asia within the limits I have indicated. In addition, therefore, to Semitic Babylonian, the cuneiform script, derived from that of Babylonia, was used by the Assyrians, who spoke the same language; the Elamites, who spoke Babylonian and ancient Elamite; the Armenians, who seem to have obtained the syllabary they used from Assyria; the Palestinian states, who got their script from Babylonia; the Mitannians, who also employed the Babylonian style; the Cappadocians, who at first used ancient Babylonian, though they seem to have been an Assyrian colony; and the Hittites, who also used the Babylonian style. These are the nationalities who are known to have used some form of the Babylonian wedge-writing, and the list omits ancient Persian on account of the impossibility of tracing any sure connection between their cuneiform alphabet{for that is, perhaps, the best word to use) and the complicated characters of the Babylonians and Assyrians….

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Stephen H. Langdon on Babylonian Menologies and the Semitic Calendars now on-line

Ishtar Gate [Public Domain via Wikipedia]
Ishtar Gate [Public Domain via Wikipedia]
The following Schweich Lecture on Biblical Archaeology is now available on-line in PDF: Stephen H. Langdon [1876-1937], Babylonian Menologies and the Semitic Calendars. The Schweich Lectures of the British Academy 1933. London: Oxford University Press, 1935. Hbk. pp.169. Click here to read. Currently there are currently 22 of these lectures in the Public Domain. See here for the full list.

Robert H. Kennett on Ancient Hebrew Social Life and Custom

The following public domain Schweich lectures are now available on-line in PDF:

Robert H. Kennett [1864-1932], Ancient Hebrew Social Life and Custom as Indicated in Law, Narrative and Metaphor. The Schweich Lectures of the British Academy 1931. London: Oxford University Press, 1933. Hbk. pp.114.

Click <<HERE>> for the download link.

You can see the full list of the Schweich lectures here.

T. Eric Peet’s Comparative Study of the Literatures of Egypt, Palestine, and Mesopotamia

Papyrus Ani curs hiero  [Public Domain image - source Wikipedia]
Papyrus Ani curs hiero
[Public Domain image – source Wikipedia]
The following Schwiech Lectures are now available on-line in PDF:

T. Eric Peet [1882-1934], A Comparative Study of the Literatures of Egypt, Palestine, and Mesopotamia: Egypt’s Contribution to the Literature of the Ancient World. The Schweich Lectures 1929. London: Oxford University Press, 1931. Hbk. 136.

Click <<HERE>> to visit the download page.

D.S. Margoliouth on the Relations between Arabs and Israelites prior to the Rise of Islam

The following public domain title from the Schweich Lectures series is now available on-line in PDF:

D.S. Margoliouth [1858-1940], The Relations between Arabs and Israelites prior to the Rise of Islam. The Schweich Lectures 1921. London: Oxford University Press, 1924. Hbk. pp.87.

Click <<HERE>> for the download link.

More Schweich Lectures can be found HERE.

Israel Abrahams on the Campaigns in Palestine from Alexander the Great

The following Schweich Lectures is now available on-line in PDF:

Israel Abrahams [1858-1925], Campaigns in Palestine from Alexander the Great. Schweich Lectures 1922. London: Oxford University Press, 1927. Hbk. pp.55.

Click <<HERE>> for the download link.

The book has a couple of useful illustrations which I have uploaded in various resolutions so that they can be re-used. This material is now Public Domain.

C.H.W. Johns on The Relations between the Laws of Babylonia and the Laws of the Hebrew Peoples

Prologue Hammurabi Code Louvre AO10237
[Public Domain photo source: Wikipedia]

I am pleased to announce that the following book is now online:

C.H.W. Johns [1857-1920], The Relations between the Laws of Babylonia and the Laws of the Hebrew Peoples. The Schweich Lectures 1912. London: Oxford University Press, 1914. Hbk. pp.96. [This material is in the Public Domain]

Click <<HERE>> to visit the download page.

H.B. Tristram’s “The Land of Moab” now on-line

The following book is now available on-line in PDF:

Henry Baker Tristram [1822-1906], The Land of Moab. Travels and Discoveries on the East Side of the Dead Sea and the Jordan. London: John Murray, 1873. Hbk. pp.408. [This material is in the Public Domain]

The book contains over 40 pen and ink illustrations dating from the 1870’s which show the landscape of Moab. I have scanned each of these individually and provided them in a variety of resolutions for re-use.

Click <<HERE>> to visit the download page. You can find out more about the author here.